At least 30 Tory-led local authorities are planning to reject demands to freeze tax rates this year, a Telegraph survey finds.
### telegraph.co.uk 8:30AM GMT 11 Jan 2015
Council tax to rise in Tory shires despite freeze ordered by ministers
By Edward Malnick – The Telegraph
Dozens of councils are preparing to defy the Government’s council tax freeze, including many in Conservative heartlands. A survey by The Telegraph found that at least 30 Tory-led local authorities are planning to reject demands to freeze tax rates this year. They are among 60 across England who say they intend to increase bills from April — including almost half of the country’s 27 county councils.
The Government has said councils should help taxpayers with the cost of living and ministers will be particularly concerned in the run-up to the general election in May.
Eric Pickles, the Local Government Secretary, said residents should “demand an explanation” if councils refused the freeze. He accused some of being “democracy dodgers” for planning to push up rates by 1.99 per cent, shy of the 2 per cent threshold at which they would have to hold a referendum.
More than 80 councils said that their proposals would not be published until a later date, raising the prospect of more householders facing rises.
The Telegraph surveyed all 353 of England’s councils about their 2015-16 council tax bills, most of which will be finalised by March. Of the 262 that responded, only four said that they were preparing to reduce their levies, while 116 were planning to go along with the request to freeze rates.
█ Soundings at Whale Oil Beef Hooked:
Cameron Slater 13/1/15 “This would be a fantastic policy to have here, as it would stop the councils doing exceptionally stupid things because there is no way in hell voters would vote for a rates rise of greater than 2%. There are a few things needed for local government reform in New Zealand. The first is the power of recall and recall elections. The USA has them, Canada has them, and the UK is getting them. This would allow citizens to remove ratbag mayors and councillors instead of waiting 3 years.” More
Postscript: Cameron Slater 13/1/15 Lusty, loopy, lascivious and now SLIMY Len
█ You might want to sponsor the dropkick…. anything to fix the Citifleet profile eh, Daaave —[McKerracher goes mad with PR opps]
Posted by Elizabeth Kerr